Illinois

Will State Elections Bring Statehouses Closer to Balance? | 06-15-2018

Lauren Arthur is not a household word, except perhaps in the neighborhood of suburban Kansas City, Missouri, where she lives. But Arthur, who on June 5 won a special election to fill a vacancy in the Missouri state senate, epitomizes the high hopes of...

Budgets in Brief - June 18 2018 | 06-15-2018

MANY STATES SHORT ON UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE FUNDS: Twenty-eight states don’t have enough money in their unemployment insurance trust funds to get through the next economic downturn, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Labor . Eleven...

IL Reeps Want Blago to Stay in Jail | 06-15-2018

Several Republican members of the Illinois Congressional delegation signed a letter to President Donald Trump last week urging him not to grant clemency to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D). The letter noted that Blagojevich’s removal from office...

Half of States Have Considered Internet Privacy Bills in 2017-18 | 06-08-2018

At least 27 states have considered but only two, Oregon and Virginia, have passed legislation dealing with internet privacy in the current session, according to information compiled from the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State...

IL Gov Achieves Budget Milestone | 06-08-2018

For the first time since taking office three years ago, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) approved a full state budget. Joined at a signing ceremony by both Democratic and Republican lawmakers, the governor said the $38.5 billion spending plan was the result...

Health & Science - June 11 2018 | 06-08-2018

MA Senate Approves HB 4539 The MASSACHUSETTS Senate approves HB 4539 , so-called “red flag” legislation that would allow the temporary removal of firearms from people considered a danger to themselves or others. The measure returns to the...

Sports Wagering Not a Sure Bet for States | 06-01-2018

The Supreme Court’s May 14 decision to strike down a federal prohibition on sports gambling may well turn out to be the financial boon many observers believe it can be. But getting there is going to be easier in some states than in others, and state...

Many States Have Considered Sports Betting Bills in 2018 | 06-01-2018

Nineteen states have considered legislation related to sports betting in 2018, according to information compiled from the National Conference of State Legislatures, the Legal Sports Report and LexisNexis State Net . One state, West Virginia, has passed...

Education - June 4 2018 | 06-01-2018

IL Senate Approves HB 4870 The ILLINOIS Senate approves HB 4870 , legislation that would allow sick students who qualify for medical marijuana to consume it on school premises, as long as they don’t smoke it and school officials agree that it...

More States Considering ACA Medicaid Expansion | 05-18-2018

Thirty-two states have expanded Medicaid in accordance with the 2012 U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the Affordable Care Act but letting states decide whether or not to implement the Medicaid expansion provided for by the federal law. A budget proposal...

Governors in Brief - May 21 2018 | 05-18-2018

CUOMO PROPOSES ELIMINATION OF NY COAL PLANTS : NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) ordered the state Department of Environmental Conservation to set new limits on carbon dioxide emissions he said would make Empire State power plants entirely coal-free by...

Budgets in Brief - May 14 2018 | 05-11-2018

CA ECONOMY NOW WORLD’S 5TH LARGEST CALIFORNIA’s economy has surpassed that of the United Kingdom to become the world’s fifth-largest, according to data released this month by the U.S. Department of Commerce. California’s 2017...

Social Policy - May 14 2018 | 05-11-2018

IA Governor Signs SF 359 As expected, IOWA Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) signs SF 359 , which would bar abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, often as early as the sixth week of pregnancy. The law’s supporters say their intention is to...

More Than Half of States Allow Marijuana Use | 05-04-2018

Twenty-nine states have passed laws broadly legalizing the use of marijuana. Twenty of those states allow the use of the drug for medical purposes, such as pain relief or the control of nausea. Nine states have legalized recreational use of marijuana...

Education - May 7 2018 | 05-04-2018

MA Supreme Judicial Court The MASSACHUSETTS Supreme Judicial Court upholds a lower court’s dismissal of a lawsuit challenging the legality of the Bay State’s charter school cap. The suit argued that caps on charters were arbitrary and denied...

Governors in Brief - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

BROWN REACHES DEAL ON CA NATIONAL GUARD USE...OR DOES HE? After a week of jousting with the Trump administration, it is still unclear if CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown (D) will order the deployment of the California National Guard to the state’s...

Education - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

IL House Approves HB 4870 The ILLINOIS House approves HB 4870 , a bill that allows infused medical marijuana to be administered to students by parents in Prairie State elementary and secondary schools. It moves to the Senate (ABC7CHICAGO). IA Governor...

Social Policy - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

PA House Approves HB 2050 The PENNSYLVANIA House approves HB 2050 , which would make it a crime for doctors to perform an abortion based on the belief the expected child is likely to have Down syndrome. It moves to the Senate (PENNLIVE). PA House...

Education - April 16 2018 | 04-13-2018

LA Senate Approves SB 178 The LOUISIANA Senate approves SB 178 , which would allow Pelican State students to wear bulletproof backpacks on school grounds. It is now in the House (FOX8LIVE.COM [NEW ORLEANS]). IL Governor Signs SB 863 ILLINOIS...

Sports Wagering Getting Play in States This Year | 04-05-2018

Fourteen states have introduced over 40 bills dealing with sports betting this year, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system . Four states - Illinois, Kansas, Missouri and West Virginia - account for more than half of the...

The Local Front - April 2 2018 | 03-30-2018

CA City Council Adopts Ordinance The city of LOS ALAMOS, CALIFORNIA adopts an ordinance exempting itself from the Golden State’s so-called “sanctuary state” law that restricts local law enforcement’s cooperation with federal...

Half of States Use Commissions for Redistricting | 03-16-2018

Commissions, rather than legislatures, have primary responsibility for drawing state legislative and/or congressional districts in 13 states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. In another 12 states, commissions either assist legislators...

Business - March 19 2018 | 03-16-2018

NY Senate Signs SB 7848 The NEW YORK Senate approves SB 7848 , which would write into law a firm definition of sexual harassment that applies to both government and the private sector, ban secret settlements of harassment cases unless the accuser requested...

More State Cybersecurity Regulation Ahead for Financial Services Industry? | 03-08-2018

Developments in 2017, including the highly publicized Equifax data breach and adoption of cybersecurity requirements for insurance companies, banks and other financial institutions by New York’s Department of Financial Services, have the financial...

Over Half of States Seeking to Maintain ‘Net Neutrality’ | 03-02-2018

At least 29 states have introduced legislation this year aimed at reinstating the requirement that internet service providers treat all content the same in terms of price and accessibility, which was eliminated last year with the Federal Communications...

Wait, He Did What? | 03-02-2018

Some ideas are so clearly bad ones that it would seem to just be common sense not to go through with them. But as Voltaire noted, common sense isn’t so common. Case in point comes from Chicago, where the Chicago Tribune reports that Illinois Gov...

Helping the Dreamers: The Clock is Ticking | 02-16-2018

States have a vital stake in federal action to rescue the beleaguered program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Instituted by President Barack Obama in 2012 by executive order, DACA has protected from deportation nearly 800,000 young...

Blockchain Bills Under Consideration in 14 states | 02-09-2018

At least 18 bills dealing with blockchain or distributed ledger technology have been introduced in 11 states so far this year, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system. Another five blockchain-related measures that were introduced...

Large Number of Potential Female Candidates for Statewide Office in 2018 | 02-02-2018

Over 165 women in 39 states will likely run for statewide political office this year, more than twice the number that actually filed to run in 2016, according to the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University’s Eagleton Institute...

Health & Science - January 22 2018 | 01-19-2018

Health In IL An ILLINOIS court orders Prairie State officials to add intractable pain as a qualifying condition for medicinal marijuana use. Cook County Judge Raymond Mitchell wrote in his decision that “the record shows that individuals with...

States With Most to Lose by Elimination of SALT Deduction | 12-15-2017

Taxpayers in nine high-income, high-tax states claimed more than 60 percent of the state and local tax (SALT) deductions on federal tax returns nationwide in 2014, according to the Tax Foundation. Seven of those states, which include California, where...

2018: A Year of Living Dangerously | 12-15-2017

The shadow of President Donald Trump and the Republican tax bill will hover over state governing bodies in 2018, a year of midterm elections that Tim Storey, political analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures, says will be “a referendum...

Most States Taking Action on Cybersecurity | 12-08-2017

As of Oct. 30 at least 43 states had introduced over 240 bills and resolutions related to cybersecurity this year, according to analysis of LexisNexis State Net data by the National Conference of State Legislatures. Twenty-seven of those states have enacted...

More Familiar Issues Likely to Draw State Lawmakers’ Attention in 2018 | 12-08-2017

As SNCJ ’s Rich Ehisen reported last week, some of the issues likely to receive the most attention from state lawmakers next year are those that are already familiar, such as health care, the opioid epidemic and sexual harassment. Here are several...

Governors in Brief - November 20 2017 | 11-17-2017

RAUNER SIGNS TWO IL ANTI-HARASSMENT BILLS : ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signed two measures last week aimed at curbing sexual harassment in the Prairie State statehouse. The measures require all lawmakers, lobbyists and state employees to undergo...

Pension Problems Worsen in Most States | 11-17-2017

As of 2016, the last year for which complete data is available, states had only 71.1 percent of the assets they needed to cover future pension payments to retirees, down from 74.5 percent in 2015. New Jersey was in the worst shape, with a pension funding...

Sexual Harassment Prevalent Problem in Statehouses | 11-03-2017

Incidents of sexual harassment or sexual assault involving female state lawmakers, legislative staff or lobbyists have been reported recently in at least 16 states. The legislatures in all of those states have training programs or policies in place to...

Lawmakers Look to End Harassment Under the Dome | 11-03-2017

What started as a flood of allegations of sexual harassment and assault against powerful Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein has morphed into an ever-widening outcry against such outrages regularly committed by men in all workplaces, including statehouses...

IL County Repeals Soda Tax | 10-13-2017

Last week, facing strong public opposition to the penny-an-ounce tax on soda and other sweetened beverages imposed in Chicago a little over two months ago, the Cook County Board voted 15-2 to repeal it, effective Dec. 1. The vote marked another...

Will Massive Equifax Breach Spur State Regulation? | 10-13-2017

The unauthorized accessing of sensitive financial and personal information about 145.5 million consumers at Equifax, which the company made public last month , has prompted numerous lawsuits , congressional hearings , and investigations by federal agencies...

Business - October 2 2017 | 09-29-2017

Business In Wisconsin A WISCONSIN Appeals Court upholds the Badger State’s right-to-work law, which bars unions and employers from requiring that all employees pay fees to join a union, either in membership dues or “fair share” payments...

Social Policy - October 2 2017 | 09-29-2017

Social Policy In Indiana A federal court permanently strikes down provisions of an INDIANA law passed last year that would have banned abortions sought due to fetal genetic abnormalities and required that aborted fetuses be buried or cremated. U.S...

Politics In Brief - October 2 2017 | 09-29-2017

DHS CONTACTS STATES ABOUT 2016 ELECTION HACKING The Department of Homeland Security directly notified election officials in 21 states last month that they had been targeted by hackers connected to the Russian government during the 2016 election campaign...

Late State Budgets on Rise | 09-15-2017

Over the past few years, late state budgets have become increasingly common. In 2013 five states had to call special sessions to pass their FY 2014 budgets, although all five managed to do so before the 2014 fiscal year actually began. But 11 states started...

Budgets In Brief - September 18 2017 | 09-15-2017

OK GOV TO CALL SPECIAL SESSION TO FIX BUDGET: OKLAHOMA Gov. Mary Fallin (R) said she will ask lawmakers to convene a special session on Sept. 25 to make adjustments to the budget after the Oklahoma Supreme Court rejected a proposed cigarette tax. The...

Governors In Brief - September 11 2017 | 09-08-2017

CHRISTIE PROPOSES NEW NJ OPIOID RULE NEW JERSEY Gov. Chris Christie (R) announced a new rule prohibiting prescribers of opioid medications from accepting meals and uncapped compensation for speaking engagements, consulting work, and other services...

Budgets In Brief - September 11 2017 | 09-08-2017

TRUMP SIDES WITH DEMS ON DEBT-CEILING EXTENSION President Trump aligned with Democratic U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-New York) and U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-California) on a plan to raise the federal debt ceiling...

Business - September 4 2017 | 09-01-2017

Business In Arizona An ARIZONA judge rules that a Grand Canyon State law barring local municipalities from requiring employers to provide additional employee benefits is unconstitutional. Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Joshua Rogers said the...

Education - September 4 2017 | 09-01-2017

Illinois Signs SB 1991 Responding to a significant shortage, ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs SB 1991 , a bill that will create a task force to formulate methods to recruit and retain agriculture teachers (THEXRADIO.COM [EFFINGHAM]).

Immigration - September 4 2017 | 09-01-2017

Illinois Signs SB 31 ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs SB 31 , a bill that prohibits police from searching, arresting or detaining someone solely because of immigration status, or because of so-called federal immigration detainers. The law does...